A Toastmaster’s Journey

From Academic to Speaker

toastmater blog April 24 2016

I am often asked why I would join Toastmasters after teaching college for thirty years. Was that not long enough for me to learn to speak in public? When I first ran for municipal office I discovered just how different speaking to a large group of strangers and trying to win them over was from that of teaching.

As I was preparing to retire from teaching I planned out my new coaching business. I was told by many experts that the key to building a coaching practice, and many new businesses, was to speak in public. Even with my background in teaching the notion of speaking in public still made me nervous. I turned to Toastmasters to help overcome that feeling.

Toastmasters International has been training speakers and leaders since 1924 and have over 300,000 members world wide. I figured that with a track record like that they should be able to help me on my journey from academic to public speaker. And what a journey it was! I felt that I was quite a good speaker with not a lot to learn.Boy, was I wrong! I was not long learning that Toastmasters had a lot to offer me in developing as a speaker. I joined in 2010 and am still learning from the program and my fellow Toastmasters every meeting.

The Learning Environment

The program is very structured and you learn in a friendly and supportive environment where we help each other to grow each week. Did it work for me? I am now an award winning professional speaker with Toastmasters being a major factor in achieving that.

Studies have shown that eighty percent of success comes from communication and people skills with the remaining twenty percent from your job expertise. If you want to get better at speaking, Toastmasters is the place to be. Won’t you join us this Wednesday and start your own Toastmasters journey.

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